Life Could Be a Dream
I’ve directed jukebox musicals before, but this was my first opportunity to perform in one. LCBAD features the music of the late 50’s/early 60’s, so my research started with listening to the iconic artists of the era like Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, Jan & Dean, The Righteous Brothers, Dion, The Drifters, etc. I not only listened, but watched as many videos as I could for the dance style of the era, which is used throughout the show.
I played Skip Henderson, the “grease monkey from the wrong side of the tracks with a heart of gold” type of guy, so I also looked at similar characters in other musicals and ,movies like Kenickie & Danny from Grease, Conrad Birdie from Bye, Bye, Birdie, and the boys from the movie The Outsiders. I found elements of Skip in many of these characters, and of course fleshed him ,out with my own sensibilities.
The TADA stage is quite small and house is very intimate, so this meant that acting and vocal choices had to be modified to the space. The vocal style of the era has a surprising degree of variations, so I found myself switching between countertenor doo-wop, bass in 4-part ,acapella, and lead baritone/tenor. It was great to flex my vocal chops in this way, and I created a warm-up routine that covered all of these bases that I still use today, for myself and with my voice students.
Photos by TADA Productions, Inc. Used with permission.
Scenic Design by Dustin Witte; Lighting Design by Robert D. Rook; Costume Design by Brooke Erks